Mike McQuaid always believed “homelessness is a solvable problem.”
The Human Services Campus in Phoenix, 204 S. 12th Ave., announced in a news release it is launching the Mike McQuaid Legacy Fund to honor him after he lost his life to COVID-19 last summer.
The fund is a three-year initiative with a goal of raising $25 million, which will be used to address homelessness through a combination of tactics, including street outreach, client services improvements and expansion and capital projects like the renovation of the now-closed Men’s Overflow Shelter.
“Not a day goes by that I don’t think of Mike,” Human Services Campus Executive Director Amy Schwabenlender said in a statement. “And, I know I’m not the only one whose life he not only touched but changed for the better. His passion, leadership, commitment and unparalleled drive to end homelessness continue to guide all of us who work everyday to bring his vision to reality.”
McQuaid began serving the Phoenix homeless population over 35 years ago at Andre House, and his vision led to the formation of the HSC in 2005.
HSC Development Director Steve Davis said the initiative is nearing the halfway point in fundraising pledges and actual donations with commitments, including a Garcia Family Foundation $10 million pledge.
“Mike was instrumental in the formation of this campus and he brought the community together as a compassionate and economic response to end homelessness,” Davis said. “Mike was the driver, and through his leadership and the collaborative efforts of so many others, we know what works. We also know we need more shelter beds, a substantial increase in affordable and permanent supporting housing, and a regional strategy to end homelessness because our entire community has a responsibility to solve the issue of homelessness.”
According to the most recent Point in Time Count, the annual census of unsheltered and sheltered homeless in Maricopa County, more than 7,400 individuals are homeless on any given night.
“Mike’s vision was broad-based,” Davis continued. “From adding much-needed shelter beds to street outreach targeting the hardest to serve and a regional expansion of holistic, collaborative services, that vision is the foundation for projected outcomes of this initiative.”
HSC expects the fund will help reach the following outcomes:
Interested donors can make one-time gifts or multi-year pledges to the initiative by contacting Davis at firstname.lastname@example.org by calling 602-705-4719.